Did you know that there is actually a nutritional and anti-muffin top building benefit in eating peanut M&M's over plain M&M's? That's music to one who is working on getting back in the skinny jeans. Eat, Drink, and Be Gorgeous is written by Esther Blum who is a MS, RD, CDN, and CNS which in the world of nutrition is a load of degrees and certification, so Esther knows food and how it effects our bodies.
Overall, I think this book is a good read for those of you who like the "fit, fun, glam girl" style and/or who are like me and working on shedding extra pounds and are truly interested in how the foods you eat or not eating are affecting not only your body but your well being. For example, artificial sweeteners can cause of worsen depression because the a.i. is inhibiting the uptake of seratonin and dopamine to the brain. If you're a prone emotional eater like myself, when you're depressed for whatever reason, you will eat and eat more to try and sooth the depression thus making weight loss a constant struggle.
The pluses of the book:
- Esther Blum is a highly educated and trained professional in the area of nutrition. This is an A+ in my book unlike other diet books that are written by former models, modeling agents, or fashionistas. I'm going to pay more credence to someone who understands the body in a far more healthy, scientific, and well rounded way.
- Esther is realistic in that life is meant to be lived and enjoyed and that includes food. Nothing is forbidden. It's about choices, and sometimes it's okay to eat that Cookies & Cream ice cream when you've just broken up with your BF or BFF. We are not going to the live the rest of our lives free of dairy, wheat, candy, booze, or grandma's homemade brownies, and when we do partake we shouldn't rid ourselves with guilt that we've "messed up" our weight loss or maintenance efforts.
- How many books on nutrition include a chapter on sex? Um, not a whole lot. I probably learned more in this section than any other chapters of the book. One tidbit, she shares that if you eat more of this one food type it help alleviate va-jay-jay dryness. Truly fascinating!
- The tone of Esther's writing is much like Dr. Oz from Oprah fame and the "YOU on a ....." books. She's funny and adds in "street" terms like muffin top and even "Punani Power." Seeing that headline in the book made me laugh hysterically and is a woman right up my alley.
The "would have made the book better" parts:
- The very last chapter of the book is "Staying Gorgeous" where Esther talks about the points of loving yourself, being kind to yourself, and that your emotions and attitudes have impact on your nutrition. I would have liked to see this chapter towards the front of the book because it adds more to Esther's theme of holistic nutrition.
...over 35 there are physical things that start happening to a woman's body that are much different than when you were in your 20's...
- The book spoke very much to women who are under 35, no kids, on the career track, and live in a big city. If you don't fit into any of those categories, you can still get some good info out of the book, but it would have been stronger if there was some info on aging and families. For example, generally over 35 there are physical things that start happening to a woman's body that are much different than when you were in your 20's like pre-menopause/menopause, slower metabolism, and joint pains. Anyone read Nora Ephron's "I Feel Bad About My Neck?"
What about getting pregnant, pregnancy and post pregnancy? How can one eat, drink, and be gorgeous when pregnant or after the kid is born. Then there is eating when a family is involved, and you are not just cooking or arranging meals just for yourself. Or, how about when you live in the suburbs or more rural areas where there might not be a Whole Foods or health stores, and your choices include far more of the chains of fast food restaurants. Even if married or single living with a significant other and no kids, what are some things one can do? When I was with Matt, I was the one who pretty much planned our food and did the cooking, which I loved, but I would have to take into consideration his nutrition too, and men have some different biology than women.
- Depending on who you are this is a plus or minus. In the book Esther is listed as a "registered dietitian at the N.V. Perricone M.D. Flagship Lifestyle Center" in New York city where she reveals her "secrets" to her "A-list" clients. There is also an endorsement by Nicholas Perricone MD on the book. As a refresher Dr. Perricone is that famous dermatologist who wrote books like "The Wrinkle Cure" and has uber expensive anti-aging creams and products that you will see in Sephora. He's even had a couple special programs on PBS. However, when you go to Esther Blum's website for Eat, Drink, and Be Gorgeous, there is no mention of her participation at the Perricone Lifestyle Center nor mention of Perricone that I could find. Hmmm, why is that?
Personally, I am not a fan of Nicholas Perricone because he comes off to me as someone who is in it really more for the money and fame than actually helping people. Now, many of you will disagree with me which is cool, this is just my take on the guy. Because there is no consistency between Esther's website and the book, my two cents is that the publisher thought the Perricone endorsement would help sell more books by adding some "star" doctor power. Personally, I think Dr. Oz would have been a better choice, but that is my two cents.
As a side note, the Foreword was written by Karen Salmansohn who is one of my FAVORITE authors. OMG, this woman writes stuff that speaks straight to my heart, and is absolutely fantastic. The Salmansohn endorsement makes up for the Perricone endorsement plus a couple martinis. Check out Eat, Drink, and Be Gorgeous it is loads of informative goodies yet inner girlie fun.